The Role Of Women In Oedipus Rex By Sophocles

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Register to read the introduction… Oedipus fears for his daughters because their reputation has been destroyed due to Oedipus’ crimes of murder and incest. His worries towards his daughters and not his sons reflect how it was believed that “men are better able to take care of themselves than women” (Nassaar). He believes that his daughters will constantly face “bitterness” and will not be able to “attend” any town events or festivals “without being forced to depart…in tears” (Sophocles exodus.255-258). Even though Oedipus cries over the pain his daughters will feel due to these judgments, his chief concern seems to be that they will not marry. He asks “whom can you ever marry? There are no bridegrooms for you and your lives must wither away in sterile dreaming” (exodus.265-267). Oedipus’ statement supports the idea that in the Greek society at the time, girls had to marry. Women are not expected to live a life of independence and are dependent on men. According to the article, Simone de Beauvoir and Antigone: Feminism and the Conflict between Ethics and Politics, “there were a few specific events during which women were allowed to be…heard in public” but “marriage, as the main event in a woman’s life, was made official by public celebration” (qtd. in Story). Because marriage is considered the main event only reinforces the idea that women lives were created by the men in them. In the play, it seems that a woman only achieves a status by being connected to a man in marriage and without a man, women were truly powerless. By providing a glimpse at the glib life Oedipus’ daughter’s face, Sophocles exposes just how tightly the girls are bound to society’s judgments and rules and he explains the trapped sensation women of that time period …show more content…
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